Pawn Queens

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Pawn Queens TV Poster Image
Not much kid appeal in this pawn shop reality series.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The show offers stereotypical interpretations of what women like and want, as well as the differences between men and women. It also contains Information about the value and importance of collectibles.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The proprietors are very polite and respectful towards their customers.

Violence

Occasionally the proprietors get into arguments about items they buy.

Sex

A lot of discussion about the differences between the sexes, but there's very little sexual content.

Language

Words like “bitch” and “ass” are occasionally heard.

Consumerism

Collectibles like vintage Barbies, Ouija boards, and Murano glass items are frequently featured.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Beer drinking is occasionally visible over dinners and social functions. Occasionally patrons bring interesting wine glasses to sell.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this reality series about a suburban pawnshop that caters to women includes some occasional strong language (“ass,” “bitch”), but is otherwise pretty mild. The show presents some rather stereotypical ideas about what women like to buy and includes plenty of discussion about the differences between the sexes. That said, kids likely won't be that interested unless they have a strong interest in collectibles.

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What's the story?

PAWN QUEENS is a reality series that features the day-to-day operations of a self-described women-friendly pawnshop. Minda Grabiec and Nikki Ruehl operate Naperville Jewelry and Loan, a suburban Chicago pawnshop that specializes in unique and/or high-end items like designer purses, vintage jewelry, and trendy shoes that are expected to appeal to female clients. Along with owner Tom Brunzelle and business partner Gregg Holloway, Minda and Nikki negotiate sales with patrons in hopes of selling them for a profit and keeping the business afloat. Every buy is risky, but together they show how the pawn business can be a woman’s world.

Is it any good?

The reality docuseries allows viewers to see what’s involved in the pawning process, which includes knowing how to identify quality collectibles and understanding their market value. It also shows how important it is to be aware of the actual profit pawnshop owners can earn from these items after they are refurbished. Some of the tension in the show comes from the risks the owners take when trying to buy and resell items. The stability of the business is often shaken, but the owners do their best to demonstrate that pawnshops can make a profit by catering to middle-class suburban women.

Though the show sends some stereotypical messages about what women are supposed to find appealing and/or important, ff viewers can get past this, they will find that the show, like the shop, is a pretty friendly place.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the reputation that pawnshops have. Where does this reputation come from? Do you agree that pawnshops usually cater to men? Why or why not? Do you think this store successfully offers an alternative to this point of view?

  • Is it ever okay to embrace a stereotype? What ways does the media perpetuate stereotypes? In what ways does the media help counter them?

TV details

For kids who love family-friendly reality TV

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